U.S. Rep. Nita Lowey, a Democrat who represents Rockland and Westchester counties, criticized President Trump's new record-low cap on how many refugees are allowed into the United States.
The congresswoman from Harrison also pointed out that the Trump Administration also has admitted about 21,000 refugees into the U.S. this year, well below the current annual cap of 45,000.
The Trump administration will cap refugee admissions at the lowest levels since the refugee resettlement program began, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Monday, Sept. 17. It's the second year in a row the administration has set the cap at a record low.
In a statement on Tuesday, Lowey said, “I am deeply disturbed by the Administration’s decision to set the Fiscal Year 2019 refugee cap at 30,000, the lowest level since the U.S. refugee resettlement program began in 1980."
"Even worse, the Trump Administration has only admitted 20,825 refugees this year, despite a 45,000 cap," Lowey said.
"With the world facing the worst refugee crisis since WWII, the Administration’s abdication of U.S. moral principles and international leadership will almost certainly lead to the loss of innocent lives," Lowey said.
Pompeo said the number should not be considered as "the sole barometer" of the U.S.' commitment to humanitarian efforts around the world, adding that the U.S. would "focus on the humanitarian protection cases of those already in the country."
As evidence, Pompeo cited the number of asylum applications expected next year, saying the U.S. will process up to 280,000 such applications in 2019.
"The ultimate goal is the best possible care and safety of these people in need, and our approach is designed to achieve this noble objective," Pompeo said. "We are and continue to be the most generous nation in the world."
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